We see slander everyday displayed in various forms of media; such as the news, television, internet. Sadly sometimes we are visited by slander among our neighbors, friends, and in some cases our own family. An onslaught of offensive words typically spewed as vicious, quick, venomous and unwarranted utterances of vile untruths – lies. Slander may certainly seem mainstream in today’s world.
But as followers of Christ we are called to recognize and know that all gossip and slander is nothing more than a vile, disgusting, and a demeaning act of rebellious behavior. Did you know the Greek word for slanderous is diabolos. Yes diabolos; which means devil. I don’t know about you but this thought alone should send high alerts to anyone in the midst of slander; and offer immediate recognition in the knowledge that where there is slander there is Satan – the devil, and there is sin. We should turn away from all slander, and never allow our ears to hear, our eyes to see, or our lips to utter. If we are not vigilant sometimes we are simply caught off guard, especially if the slanderous act comes from a neighbor, a friend or a brother.
Ephesians 6:10 instructs us,
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might put on the whole armour of God that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.”
Did you hear that? The last five words – “the schemes of the devil”. So everyday we must be vigilant and “Armour Up” to the possibility of slander and the very schemes of the devil. We must prepare ourselves for the attack and avoid being caught up in the fray.
So how does “the devil” use these slanderous schemes? Robin Schumacher expresses this well in an article titled “The Heart of Slander”.
In these following words the “slander scheme” is perfectly outlined from a human nature perspective.
“If you cannot attack the argument, you attack the person in some way. Either assault the character or attack the circumstance, which results in diverting the issue or distracting the topic of discussion. It is driven by Pride and says, “You have to listen to me, but I don’t have to listen to you”.
Charles Spurgeon who was often slandered was quoted as saying:
“You cannot slander human nature, it is worse than words can paint it.”
But this outline does paint for us a clear picture of the “scheme of slander” .
Just how serious is slander among followers of Christ? EXTREMELY –
“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as good for building up, as fits the occasion that is may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.”
“Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another as God in Christ forgave you. (Ephesians 4:31)
What about non-believers?
“You are of your father the devil and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is not truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44)
What are non-believers to do?
And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.” (John 3:14)
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)
Christ Conquers our Accuser – Satan the Devil (Diabolos)
“Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, he who accuses them before our God day and night.” (Revelation 12:10)
As Christians we can rejoice and be grateful in knowing that through Christ and His word we can “Armour Up” every single day. Christians are called to vigilance; as trusting and loving people but we must prepare for battle and not be taken by surprise attacks of the devil. In Christ we can conquer all slander and slanderous acts in a way that honors Him.
~ Amen :Y
Charles Spurgeon also had this to say about slander:
“If there were not grateful hearers of ill reports, there would be an end of the trade of spreading them”.